Get to know: Shaheen Haque

Shaheen Haque, Turkey and Middle East Territory Manager, Interactive Intelligence.

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Get to know: Shaheen Haque
By  Andrew Seymour Published  June 22, 2010

Shaheen Haque, Turkey and Middle East Territory Manager, Interactive Intelligence.

What’s your career history in the industry to date?

I began working for statistics company SPSS in sales, as well as CASE tool vendor LBMS, before returning to SPSS to run the government sales team. I also worked for business intelligence vendors Seagate Software and AppSmart, and then joined OSS vendor Micromuse to look after the EMEA channel. This position landed me in Dubai in 2005 as the regional sales manager. IBM acquired Micromuse in 2006 after which I became the IBM Netool/Tivoli sales manager for ME and Pakistan. In late 2007 I joined Interactive Intelligence as Middle East territory sales manager.

What is the most valuable business lesson you’ve learnt?

Learn from your competition! The IT market globally is just as much about knowing the competition as it is about knowing your customers and your own technology.

How do you relax outside of the work environment?

I have two boys, one who is almost eight and the other almost two. They keep me busy acting as their chauffeur to keep up with their social calendar. I have also recently taken up squash.

What do you enjoy most about working in the Middle East IT market?

The Middle East is such a dynamic, cosmopolitan and diverse market. I have enjoyed coming into the market at the height of the growth period - not only surviving but growing through the lull - and I am now looking forward to [the market] pushing out of the recession with even more growth. The best thing is the Middle East market is resilient and flexible enough to map onto the changing economic climate far better and faster than most other regions.

What is your proudest moment to date?

Seeing the fruition of a host of channel activities initiated by me for Micromuse across Europe, eventually resulting in closer relationships with our partners and their customers, as well as organisation-wide recognition with an ‘exceptional work within the channel’ award.

What do you dislike most about working in the market?

I don’t really dislike anything about working in this market. However, I would like to see a little more conviction in adhering to decision time scales, but I guess we have learnt to live and accommodate this!

How would you describe your management style?

The style I employ depends on the strategic goals of the organisation. In general, I feel my management style incorporates a mixture of both the authoritative and democratic ideals. I would say my style continues to evolve, especially with the current changes within the cultural and economic environments we have to operate within. I regard the free flow of communication between all levels in the organisation as being imperative. Without adequate communication, managerial style becomes irrelevant.

What is your top channel tip for the next 12 months?

Don’t forget to focus and build strong relationships with existing customers and partners. It is far easier to cultivate existing accounts where they have and use your solution already!

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